Clocks spring forward this weekend and summer time begins, but when exactly?

Clocks spring forward this weekend and summer time begins, but when exactly?

Although the twice-yearly change of hour is now due to an EU Directive, Spain first began doing it back in 1940



Saturday, 25 March 2023, 06:52


It’s that time of year again. This weekend the clocks go forward and we lose an hour’s sleep. When, exactly? In the early hours of Sunday morning, 26 March: at 2am, it will suddenly become 3am.

This change to the hour is part of EU Directive 200/84CE, which also decides when winter time begins. It has to be applied in all European Union countries, and the aim is to save energy and take advantage of the extra hours of daylight. As the EU Commission argued in 1999, the measure also benefits sectors such as transport and communications, road safety, working conditions, health, tourism and leisure.

Energy efficient

The main reason for having summer time and winter time is to be more energy efficient. In fact, Spain first began to adapt its hours to the seasons back in 1940.

In recent years, the usefulness of the twice-yearly time changes has been questioned from various quarters, especially by the national commission for the rationalisation of Spanish timetables, a non-profit organisation which was set up in 2003.

In 2018 the EU Commission carried out a public consultation into whether or not to continue with the twice-yearly change of hour, and over 80 per cent of the 4.6 million people who took part said they would rather the practice was stopped. Nevertheless, a lack of consensus between the member states and the evaluation of the impact of the measure resulted in it being delayed, so it has not yet come into force and therefore, we will all lose an hour early on Sunday morning, once again.

As published by Spain’s Official State Bulletin, the BOE, the time changes in the coming years are:

Daylight Saving Time start dates (2am is 3am)

2023 : Sunday, 26 March.

2024 : Sunday, 31 March.

2025 : Sunday, 30 March.

2026 : Sunday, 29 March.

Winter Time start dates (3am is 2am)

2023 : Sunday, 29 October.

2024 : Sunday, 27 October.

2025 : Sunday, 26 October.

2026 : Sunday, 25 October.




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